online marketing psychology

January 24, 2010

Ice cream: a universal language?

The other day I was talking with a friend about the names of the so called Heartbrand, the umbrella brand that covers the ice cream operations of Unilever. Every country has the same logo, but the name of the brand that changes from country to country.

In Belgium I knew it as Ola, and when I arrived here I realized that Ola actually means hello in Portuguese. But Brasil uses a different word: Kibon.
That made me wonder, whether they wanted to keep more abstract naming, and have the name not actually meaning something. Turns out that the names relate to the way the company expanded its operations.
In every country were they expanded through acquisitions, they just kept the name of the original company. This way, familiarity with the brand continued even under new management.

And to satisfy my inner child (don't ask), I made a small overview from the names and countries where they are used!
  • Olá (Portugal)
  • Ola (Holland, South Africa and Belgium)
  • Algida (Greece, Italy, Poland, Russia, Slovakia, Turkey and Hungary)
  • Holanda (Mexico)
  • Tio Rico (Venezuela)
  • Helados La Fuente (Colombia)
  • Pingüino (Ecuador)
  • Kibon (Brazil)
  • Bresler (Chile and Bolivia)
  • Eskimo (Slovenia, Croatia, Austria and Czech Republic)
  • Frigo (Spain)
  • Frisko (Denmark)
  • GB Glace (Finland and Sweden)
  • Strauss (Israel)
  • HB Ice cream (Ireland)
  • Kwality Wall's (India)
  • Langnese (Germany)
  • Miko (Egypt (ميكو) and France)
  • Lusso (Swiss)
  • Streets (Australia, New Zealand)
  • Wall’s (United Kingdom, Signapore, China and Pakistan)
  • Good Humor (United States of America)
  • Selecta (Philippines)
What about your your earliest childhood brand obsessions? :)


  1. "Kibon" is a brand that was created in Brazil in 1941, as a subsidiary of China's "U.S. Harkson", and was bought by Unilever in 1997.

    "Kibon" ("kEE-bom")is a phonetic play with "Que bom!", that means "how good!", in portuguese.

  2. Thanks for the info Ricardo, cool to know!

    I didn't even think of possible wordplay, but that is a good name!

  3. Dude, THANK YOU for this post! I am traveling through Europe and started wondering the exact same thing as soon as I hit the first country (Portugal). I live in Brasil most of the year and know "Kibon," so I was very suprised to see the same logo in Portugal with a different name...then the next day in France! And the next day in Belgium...then London...and today Italy! All different names.

    Thanks for this great post. I thought I was the only one who had such curiousities. Everyone else I've asked about this logo on my trip seemed not to care! ;)

  4. Glad you enjoyed it R Dub!

    I have bored many people talking about this as well :)